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Cooking for Two: 120 recipes for Every Day and Those Special Nights    by Bruce Weinstein & Mike Scarbrough order for
Cooking for Two
by Bruce Weinstein
Order:  USA  Can
HarperCollins, 2004 (2004)

Read an Excerpt

* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

The authors of Cooking for Two say that 'If you've ever cooked a typical recipe for two, you know the shtick. You use a half a can of stock, or less, and then what? You're left with that irritating can in the refrigerator, the one with the aluminum foil wadded across the top, the one you throw out a week later.' And so on with other ingredients. They concluded that 'part of the secret to successful small-batch cooking was doing it without waste.' Hence a great cookbook for that man in your life and you. Or that woman in your life and you. Or whatever combination you happen to be. Be sure to read the Introduction and 'Before You Start Cooking' for information on equipment, ingredients, how to stock your pantry and five good tips for success.

Then on to 120 wonderful recipes. Each and every one is geared to cooking small batches but excellent in taste and presentation. Each recipe starts with a comment by the chefs pertinent to the dish to be made. Fresh Pea Soup sounds like a winner to me, a great meal on a cold winter's night. Who doesn't love Jambalaya? And an all-time old favorite, Yankee Pot Roast Stew, calls to me. The section on salads calls for the cook to break away from his or her current repertoire to make Southwestern Salad with Chicken, Grapefruit, and Cumin Vinaigrette (lead me to it), or Curried Tuna Stuffed Tomatoes. Shoot, I want them both. On to casseroles. Macaroni and Cheese for two, Tamale Pie, Chicken Pot Pie, Arroz Con Polo, Coq Au Vin. All these dishes made for just two!

Pastas! I would like to work my way through this whole glorious section, one dish at a time – from Pasta Bolognese to Rice Noodles with Dried Pears and Cherry Tomatoes. The Vegetarian dishes really turned me on - Veggie Burgers or Pulled Potatoes and Vegetable Sandwiches. The Fish section has Shrimp with Peppers and Garlic, Orange Scallop Stir-Fry, Love Stir fries, Fish Fillets in Parchment, Sesame Tuna Steaks. Chicken, Turkey and Duck turned up some interesting dishes. How about Sauteed Chicken with Radishes? Or Southwestern Moo Shu Chicken Wraps? Sweet-and-Sour Potatoes and Turkey looks like a winner, as does Pan-Seared Duck Breasts with Honey and Figs. Pork and Lamb have their turns as do Beef and Veal, with wonderful recipes for an entrée for two with no waste.

Next we come to Cookies - with Chocolate Chip Espresso Cookies and Linzer Cookies, to name just two. Puddings? Not just for two. But why not? Fruits as desserts. Gorgeous. And finishing with a flourish (but no left-overs) are 'Cake and Other Treats', which includes Lemon Cake with Lemon Icing and Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing. Ice Cream Burritos concludes this very wonderful book that will hold a special place in my cookbook library. How nice to have that Significant Other over for dinner and not have to eat the same meal again and again for the rest of the week. Kudos to Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarbrough for reducing quantities of good food to a minimum without sacrificing quality.

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